Palo Alto Oaks sweep in final tuneup before West Regional


The Palo Alto Oaks tuned up for another run at the AABC West Regional title by sweeping a Western Baseball Association doubleheader from the visiting San Francisco Tides on Sunday at Baylands Athletic Center.

Palo Alto wrapped up its regular season with a 14-2 mark following 7-1 and 7-5 triumphs.

As he did last week, Palo Alto manager Greg Matson used nearly all of his pitchers in the two games in an effort to get them ready for this week's regional tournament.

In the first game, starter Graham Fisher claimed the win with four shutout innings, allowing only four hits. Ricky Navarro and Matt Campbell completed the game allowing just one run on four hits. Both Fisher and Navarro are Gunn grads.

Leadoff hitter Casey Thompson led the offensive charge for the Oaks by reaching base in four of his five plate appearances, recording two hits and two runs batted in. Third baseman Nick Molina, catcher Gary Ellis and designated hitter Brian Beres also were major contributors to the offense.

Pitcher Dominic Hernandez started, and was awarded the win, in Game 2 as he allowed two runs and four hits in his three innings on the mound. Sacred Heart Prep grad Will Nahmens and Gilbert Guerra finished out the final four innings.

San Francisco made things exciting in the seventh and final inning, scoring three additional runs and bringing the winning run to the plate before the Oaks nailed down the win.

Besides earning a pitching save, Guerra had a team-leading four hits in the game including a triple. Catcher Tyler Finley, a Menlo-Atherton High grad, added three hits.

The Oaks return to action on Friday with their opener in the five-team AABC West Regional Tournament, which originally was going to be six teams.

Palo Alto will face the San Fernando Cardinals at Washington Park in Burlingame at 10 a.m. Should Palo Alto win, it will have a bye Friday afternoon and advance to a third-round game Saturday at 4 p.m.

In other Friday games at Baylands, Fontanetti's will take on defending regional champ Easton Elite at 4 p.m. and the winner of that game will take on the Sacramento Legends at 7 p.m.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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